Combining work and study
Publication date: 16/01/2020
How to find and manage a part-time job alongside studying abroad.

Why have a part-time job abroad?

Finding part-time employment during a study period abroad can be an excellent way to help finance your education and to better get to know the country you’re living in, including its job market.

Working alongside your studies can help you meet new people, both local and international. Managing part-time work during your studies is also a valuable professional skill to add to your CV.

How to find a job

Successfully finding work in another country can be difficult. You might not know where to look or who to ask for opportunities.

Restaurants, hotels and bars often look for students to join their teams part-time. Try asking in such places for job opportunities, perhaps you’ll learn about vacancies with other employers you hadn’t previously considered.

Similarly, expanding and using your personal network to search for a job and find out where others found work can be very helpful. If you’re finishing an internship, ask if there’s any chance for you to continue working for your employer part-time afterwards.

It’s essential to make sure that you hold all the necessary documentation to work abroad. Non-EU citizens will need to hold a work visa or permit to do so.

Managing your time

Most part-time jobs occupy between 4 and 16 hours each week. Sometimes it can be difficult to manage work and study at the same time, for example when you have upcoming exams or assignments.

Try to communicate your availability as clearly and as far in advance as possible to your manager. You should inform your manager in writing (by email, if appropriate) if you need to request a change to your working hours.

You might need to use your holiday to study for exams or to prepare assignments. Obtaining your degree should always be your top priority. Reflect on whether any part-time work could be a detriment your studies and try to reduce its impact.

Learning to occasionally (politely) say ‘no’ to your employer can be hard, but is crucial. You should ensure that you have enough personal time to have a social life during your studies and to rest!

You can learn a lot about yourself through part-time work, such as what kind of job interests you and how to balance your personal and professional interests. Try to see it as a learning experience and make the most of the chance to discover more about yourself, the country you’re living in and to get to know others in your new home!

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Want to know more about finding a job after graduation?

Preview image: © iStock/PeopleImages, 2019.